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Dilute Tortoiseshell Cat: Facts, Origin & History (With Pictures)

Patricia Dickson

By Patricia Dickson

Dilute Tortoiseshell

If you’ve ever seen a Dilute Tortoiseshell Cat, you won’t soon forget it, as they are some of the most gorgeous and unique cats on earth. However, no matter how gorgeous and unique this Tortie is, they have the exact nutritional, health, and love requirements as any other cat.

The Dilute Tortoiseshell isn’t a separate cat breed; it’s a color variation of the Tortoiseshell pattern that occurs in several breeds. In the guide below, we’ll give you a bit about the history of this cat breed, how it became so popular, and even some unique facts about this feline that you might not have known, so join us.


The Earliest Records of Dilute Tortoiseshell Cats in History

The first recorded history of the Dilute Tortoiseshell Cat was in the 1970s. The common colors for a Tortie are orange and black, and these color variations have been around for centuries. The Dilute Tortie has the same colors, but they are lighter and much less intense than classic Torties. These are extremely rare cats, so if you’re looking for one, it may take you some time to find it.

How Dilute Tortoiseshell Cats Gained Popularity

It didn’t take long after the first Dilute Tortoiseshell Cat was born in the 1970s for the cat to become extremely popular. Not only do the unique colors of the Dilute make it popular, but most are also sweet, playful, and intelligent.

These cuddly, gorgeous bundles of fur are certainly worth the price you’ll pay if you can find one to purchase or adopt.

Dilute Tortoiseshell cat with yellow eyes
Image Credit: Mary Swift, Shutterstock

Formal Recognition of Dilute Tortoiseshell Cats

The Dilute Tortoiseshell Cat is not formally recognized by the Cat Fancier’s Association or any other organization. However, that doesn’t mean this cat isn’t an excellent pet.


Top 4 Unique Facts About the Dilute Tortoiseshell Cat

Now that you know a bit about the history and popularity of the Dilute Tortoiseshell Cat, we’ll tell you some unique facts you might not have known about this color variation of the Tortie.

1. Dilute Torties Come in Many Breeds

A Dilute Tortoiseshell Cat isn’t a breed of cat. Instead, it’s a color variation that happens in quite a few cat breeds. Some examples are Maine Coons, Cornish Rexes, and American Shorthair cat breeds. You might also be interested to note that Dilute Torties can be long or shorthaired cats.

tortoiseshell blue smoke maine coon standing outdoors
Image Credit: N Roberts, Shutterstock

2. Most Dilute Torties Are Females

Most Dilute Torties are females; in fact, most Tortoiseshell cats are females because the X chromosome determines the color. While it is possible for a Dilute Tortie to be male, it’s extremely rare for this very reason. Male Dilute Torties can experience more than a few health problems, and it’s best to search for a female.

3. Many Dilute Torties Have an Attitude

Commonly called Tortitude, you’ll find that many Dilute Torties have quite an attitude. While the environment, training, and socialization certainly play a role in the type of attitude your Tortie has, Torties are undoubtedly famous for their spunky behavior.

a dilute tortoiseshell cat at home
Image By: Jenna930, Shutterstock

4. Dilute Torties Are Famous in Folklore

Male Torties are considered good luck in many countries. They are also considered to be good luck and to represent money and wealth in the United States. They are often called “Money Cats” for that very reason.

Whether any of these things are true about the Dilute Tortie, they make great pets for someone who is looking for a loyal, loving companion.


Does the Dilute Tortoiseshell Cat Make a Good Pet?

The Dilute Tortoiseshell cat makes an excellent pet for families and singles. They tend to have a bit of an attitude, but it can be different for each individual cat. It also depends on the environment and the way the cat is raised and treated.

Dilute Torties can get along with children and other pets but must be socialized and trained as kittens. It is best to teach children how to handle and treat a cat before letting them play or touch your Dilute Tortie. To avoid accidental injuries, you should not leave young children alone with the cat.


Final Thoughts

The Dilute Tortie has the same orange and black coloring as the classic Tortie, only lighter.

These cats are usually females and are rare, but male Dilute Torties are even rarer. If you decide you want to adopt a Dilute Tortie, you could have difficulty finding one, as they can’t be bred but developed naturally. However, you can check shelters and rescue organizations for Dilute Torties.

Featured Image Credit: COULANGES, Shutterstock

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